Bathurst Observatory Research Facility

Bathurst NSW Australia

Please like our Facebook page for latest news and images!

https://www.facebook.com/BathurstObservatory/

Bathurst Observatory Research Facility is an observatory site primarily for education, research and study, though we do offer general public viewing nights.

Open Nights Star Tours Available Now (conditions and limits apply)

Open Nights Star Tours

Bookings will be essential for all tours.

(All tours subject to weather)

NEWS: Tours begin at the new site

Tours are underway at the new site. The site is not complete yet, however, are able to offer tours to help complete other facilities.

Tours will be generally be available any clear Friday and Saturday nights, however, we can also offer some tours, mid week for groups of 5 or more. Check to see if I am available.

Any clear Friday and Saturday Nights!!!

Note, Bathurst Observatory has moved and under construction!!!!

The new site, opened during 2020 and offers better sky, better viewing opportunities and a more unique experience.

No tours in the week of Full Moon.

Bookings essential.

Please note that the main telescope is pretty big and requires use of a small stepladder for viewing. Please advise if you would have difficulties with steps and we can set up a different telescope.

* There may be some mid week research nights where tours are not available.

Reduced Tours Prices for groups

Costs :

As the site is not yet complete with all facilities, we are asking for donation towards completion (an amount you think is fair for the tour and my time).

(Note: we have NO credit card facilities)

Tour bookings and Enquiries, phone (0427292214 Please leave a message as we screen out spam calls), or email us. (Email is by far the best way to get us, if you don’t get a reply it means you have us blocked!!! Please change your settings!).

How to find us? See Location!

Why “Open Nights”?

Bathurst Observatory in eveningWe used to do tours in the observatory dome. However, we found that the dome itself blocked out most of the night sky! Our visitors wanted to view through a telescope but be able to see and hear about the wonders of the night sky at the same time. We particularly had many visitors from urban areas wanting to see a nice dark country sky full of stars. The solution, set up the public telescope as nature wanted us to, on cleared ground next to the observatory, under the wonder of the Southern stars.

Our tours are conducted with the only guide with over fifteen years educational astronomy experience and with Bachelor of Education Honours Degree! Our guide is also an internationally recognised expert in the field of meteorites.

Tours require bookings and are weather dependent. (We can’t see stars through clouds!) Tour duration is about 1 hour, depending on time of year.

We cater for all school astronomy and space excursions, as well as general public telescope tours of the night sky. Primarily we offer our open night tours to inspire everyone to look to the night sky.

The Milky Way stretches overhead in this view taken at the Bathurst Observatory Research Facility - 6th July 2013The Milky Way stretches overhead in this view taken at the Bathurst Observatory Research Facility.
The Bathurst Observatory Research Facility (Research and Meteorite Related Enquires and Public Viewing Nights)

The Bathurst Observatory Research Facility, located on the current site on Limekilns Road north east of Bathurst. At the research site, we study, comets, asteroids, variable stars, meteors and meteorites. For research related enquires please email us.

We also welcome any enquires or questions you may have on Astronomy, Space or meteorite related matters.

Our FaceBook page https://www.facebook.com/BathurstObservatory/ is regularly updated, so have a look for the latest news and images from the observatory.

Other Tours

Museum

Solar Telescope Tours (Viewing the Sun)

On occasions, we are able to offer daytime telescope views of the sun. We have a special telescope that allows you to SAFELY view the sun. At present the availability of these tours will depend on three factors.

  1. that I’m available on the day.
  2. it is not cloudy.
  3. that the sun has some active features.

The third point is important, as sometimes the sun can be quiet and not as interesting to see.

These tours will be about 15 minutes in duration and by gold coin donation. Bookings for a solar tour would be essential.

Donate to Bathurst Observatory

We would really appreciate your support!

Bathurst Observatory is in the process of moving to a new location. All facilities are currently being rebuilt.
Your Contribution of any amount will go towards:
$1000 for the crane, $5500 for the Observatory Foundations and Telescope Pier, $3500 for the Public Viewing Area.

Keep up to date with our latest News.
Please Subscribe to our Newsletter.

We value your privacy and do not share your information.

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons

Well it has been a shocking week of weather (no tours due to cloud!). A few weeks ago, I did had a clear night and was able to capture an image of galaxy M83. Love the spiral structure of this galaxy.

Fingers crossed for clear weather soon!
... See MoreSee Less

Well it has been a shocking week of weather (no tours due to cloud!). A few weeks ago, I did had a clear night and was able to capture an image of galaxy M83. Love the spiral structure of this galaxy. 

Fingers crossed for clear weather soon!

Comment on Facebook

🤞🏽tomorrow nights tours will go ahead ☺️

😶‍🌫️😶‍🌫️😶‍🌫️😶‍🌫️😶‍🌫️😶‍🌫️🙄

I had a LOT of telescope issues on the evening of the 27th June, trying to image comets Pons Brooks (left) and Comet C/2023 A3 (Tsuchinshan-ATLAS) (right). Note the very distant galaxies around comet Tsuchinshan!. It seems windows yet again reassigned my com ports and the telescope is very com port specific. A driver issue also affected the autoguider. So in the end, I rushed these images when things tried to talk to each other. Not the best, sorry!

I am also finalising the astrophotography classes. July might be a bit soon, but August is looking very good to start them off!
... See MoreSee Less

I had a LOT of telescope issues on the evening of the 27th June, trying to image comets Pons Brooks (left) and Comet C/2023 A3 (Tsuchinshan-ATLAS) (right). Note the very distant galaxies around comet Tsuchinshan!. It seems windows yet again reassigned my com ports and the telescope is very com port specific. A driver issue also affected the autoguider. So in the end, I rushed these images when things tried to talk to each other. Not the best, sorry!

I am also finalising the astrophotography classes. July might be a bit soon, but August is looking very good to start them off!Image attachment

Comment on Facebook

Nice photos, I have a question, the angle of the comet to us here on earth, does it make the comet look to be moving faster to the background stars ? I took 32 photos over 8 minutes of the comet on the 25th and when I checked them on the computer, I could see the comet moving closer to a background star. The last time I photographed the comet was about a month ago and I didn't notice any movement. I know it is moving and on it's way out of the inner solar system.

Tee Pee

I have finally planned the July school holiday tour dates!
These are the only dates available due to a few other commitments I have.

Sunday the 7th July through to Friday the 12th.
and Monday the 15th July through to Wednesday the 17th.

Tour times are 7:30pm and bookings essential. They do tend to book up fast! All tours are weather dependent and still donation entry. Book via email or message.
... See MoreSee Less

I have finally planned the July school holiday tour dates! 
These are the only dates available due to a few other commitments I have. 

Sunday the 7th July through to Friday the 12th.
and Monday the 15th July through to Wednesday the 17th.

Tour times are 7:30pm and bookings essential. They do tend to book up fast! All tours are weather dependent and still donation entry. Book via email or message.

Comment on Facebook

Anthony Robinson

Matt Piper

Update: I ignored advice and went up the ladder and managed a temporary fix. The observatory is at least operational again!

In good news (kind of) while the observatory isn't functional until I get the repair done, that will not affect the proposed first astrophotography class!! I shall post the date for that very soon (July) and likely run two dates in case people need an option.

Not much progress on the observatory repair as yet. The dome isn’t closing properly and needs a few parts fabricated and fitted to the upper shutter (top of the image). I did get the parts today but it will take a couple of helpers to fix. Sadly I’m on my own this weekend. Basically, if you look at the image, you will notice the upper dome has sagged a bit in the middle, causing it to hit the lower one. The fix will be a threaded rod inside to tighten it up and give it the shape back. My back injury is still a worry, so while I'm on my own, I'm not climbing the ladder!
... See MoreSee Less

Update: I ignored advice and went up the ladder and managed a temporary fix. The observatory is at least operational again!

In good news (kind of) while the observatory isnt functional until I get the repair done, that will not affect the proposed first astrophotography class!! I shall post the date for that very soon (July) and likely run two dates in case people need an option.

Not much progress on the observatory repair as yet. The dome isn’t closing properly and needs a few parts fabricated and fitted to the upper shutter (top of the image). I did get the parts today but it will take a couple of helpers to fix. Sadly I’m on my own this weekend. Basically, if you look at the image, you will notice the upper dome has sagged a bit in the middle, causing it to hit the lower one. The fix will be a threaded rod inside to tighten it up and give it the shape back. My back injury is still a worry, so while Im on my own, Im not climbing the ladder!

Comment on Facebook

At least you know what is wrong with it and have the parts ready to go.

Yes, don't take any chances with your health. Be safe.

Take care.

While out imaging comets last night, the observatory had a mechanical issue with the dome. I am hoping to fix it Saturday so it doesn’t cancel tours but admit I’m not overly hopeful I can fix it in time for this or even next weekend. Fingers crossed. If the weather forecast is correct, it may be raining anyway. ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

I would say you will have time to fix it. 🌧🌧🌧🌧

Fingers and toes crossed for you.

I caught up with comet Pons Brooks again on the 28th May. Imaged with the C14 at F2. The anti-tail is looking more prominent and a few rays in the ion/dust tail. ... See MoreSee Less

I caught up with comet Pons Brooks again on the 28th May. Imaged with the C14 at F2. The anti-tail is looking more prominent and a few rays in the ion/dust tail.

Comment on Facebook

Well done. Amazing captions. 👏 👏👏

Nice work

Comet C/2023 A3 (Tsuchinshan-ATLAS) imaged on the 28th of May. The comet is lower right of the image (so I could keep the two galaxies in the frame). This comet 'may' become a bright object low in the predawn sky during early October. In the meantime, it is showing a nice dust tail as it draws near the sun in coming months ... See MoreSee Less

Comet C/2023 A3 (Tsuchinshan-ATLAS) imaged on the 28th of May. The comet is lower right of the image (so I could keep the two galaxies in the frame). This comet may become a bright object low in the predawn sky during early October. In the meantime, it is showing a nice dust tail as it draws near the sun in coming months
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